HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI,
Saint Louis, January 9, 1862.
Brigadier-General PRENTISS, Palmyra, Mo.:
General Schofield expects to encounter a rebel force between Renick and Huntsville about noon on Saturday. Send a force from Hudson to the west of Huntsville to cut off their retreat.
H. W. HALLECK,
[JANUARY 9, 1862.- For Halleck to McClellan, in reference to co-operation with Buell, see Series I, Vol. VII, p. 539.]
ROLLA, January 9, 1862.
Captain J. C. KELTON,
CAPTAIN: The needless amount of stores in this command are being turned over to the post quartermaster. The amount transported around from Tipton via Springfield is surprising. The difficulty of procuring supplies induced every officer to hold fast all he procured, and this army had thus become immovable. Over 200 wagon loads have already been brought in and safely deposited in buildings. I have appointed an ordnance officer to look after ammunition, and I find large quantities unprotected from moisture and in volume unnecessary for a march of double this command. Some of it I will send to the arsenal and the rest will be put in proper buildings. While stores are being thus removed from the field, I am trying to have distributed and equalized the proper amount for convenient use, and by this means the mobility of my command will be vastly improved. The arrest and trial of officers by courts-martial embarrass the command, and I hope the commanding general will not object to some apparent irregularities in courts-martial, designed to get rid of endless quarrels by summary disposition of vexatious prosecutions. The enemy is in force at Springfield, but he can be and must be driven to the wall. These bickerings, with corps changes among officers, employ too much time, which they should devote to the enemy.
My cavalry is overworked, and yet I do not like to draw it in, because it greatly annoys the enemy in his means for procuring supplies. I earnestly desire to move infantry and artillery forward to support the cavalry. An effectual force against the rebels in Springfield would close them out in Missouri. Three more batteries, three regiments of infantry, and three of cavalry would be desirable for that purpose, but I would risk it with less. Price could be driven out of Springfield with a much smaller force, but he could find a plain a few miles out to stand upon, and it would therefore require more to induce a surrender or entire departure from the State. As a means to such an end I must again recommend a depot in front or at rear of Lebanon. From that point we can go beyond Springfield without a wagon train, and it is easy to hold a point like Lebanon, because it can only be approached through rough defiles.
I hope the general will excuse suggestions, which seem somewhat needless, since he has the matter in contemplation, but my proximity